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Car-maggeddon Tournament Round 1, Battle 4: the Mercury Marquis from Stake Land (2010) vs. Tallahassee’s Escalade from Zombieland (2009)!

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Welcome to Post-Apocalyptic Media’s Car-maggeddon Tournament, where we’ve pitted popular vehicles from various wastelands against one another in a battle to the death! 

There are 20 vehicles of different shapes and sizes. Who will win and be crowned the Wasteland Winner?  

Note: These vehicles are from movies only and one vehicle per movie. (And no space ships or aircraft)


How will Car-maggeddon work? Each Saturday, we will pitch two vehicles against one another based on six criteria (listed below)! 


Does the car have a tendency to break down? To lose parts? Can you sleep in it? 


Does the vehicle have any weapons or other ways to take out the competition? 


What armor (if any) does it have? How hard would it be for a zombie to get inside it or for someone to take out the driver from outside?  


Can it outrun any threats, or does it just trundle along? 


Can it ram its way out of anything holding it back? 


This is basically a tie-breaker. In the battle, which vehicle has a higher “coolness factor” or matches best the wasteland look?


Check out the roaster below to see upcoming battles! Once every battle is complete in Round 1, the winners will move on to round 2.

Round 1, Battle 4:

The 1969 Mercury Marquis from Stake Land (2010) vs. Tallahassee’s Cadillac Escalade from Zombieland (2009)

Ah yes, the classic battle of vampires vs. zombies. And classic car vs. new(ish) SUV. 

Stake Land is a lesser-known post-apocalyptic film set in a world ravaged by a vampire pandemic. The Mercury Marquis is driven by the hero, a vampire hunter named Mister, who is on the search for a safe haven along with a young boy and a nun. 

Zombieland … I don’t need to explain the masterpiece that is Zombieland, do I? You’ll recall the Escalade was the first vehicle Tallahassee drives, which he had emblazoned with a Number 3 (referring to Nascar’s Dale Earnhardt).

The Vehicles! 



In terms of practicality, the vehicles are on par. Both are roomy, comfortable rides that can easily fit a pair of bad-ass sisters (or a nun named Sister), as well as any weapons or Twinkies as required. The Escalade and the Marquis would be relatively easy to repair and maintain, even if they overheat.

While the Escalade is undoubtedly large and in charge, the Marquis would have a fighting chance regarding power and speed. Both cars have a V8 and, due to the Mercury’s steel chassis, likely are of a comparable weight for ramming their way through things (zombies or vampires, preferably). Yet, the Escalade’s added plow on the front adds a bit more ramming (or zombie parting) capability. The Escalade’s All Wheel Drive, versus the Marquis’ Rear Wheel, allows it to launch faster than the Mercury (0-60 in 7.8 seconds vs. 8.8), meaning it would get away quicker from any zombies or vampires. As we know, Rule #1 for surviving any apocalypse is Cardio.

The Escalade also wins in terms of defense. Despite their similar weights, the Escalade is decades newer, meaning it has much better built-in safety features. Were the two to engage in a game of chicken, the Escalade would crumple around the Marquis, but where its occupants might be banged up a bit, the Marquis’  wouldn’t likely survive the crash. Then again, those in the Escalade would only be safe if they were following Rule #4: Buckle Up.

As neither of these vehicles has been outfitted with any offensive capabilities, it’s down to which vehicle is the most badass. Personally, I prefer the timeless elegance of American muscle to the stereotypical drug dealer’s car, but I’m not knocking on anyone’s aesthetic. You do you, everyone. 

Despite Stake Land staking a claim on the title with its classic convertible, the Escalade plows through the old Marquis like so many zombies. Don’t forget to Double Tap!  



WINNER, Round 1, Battle 4: Tallahassee’s Escalade from Zombieland!


Next Saturday, we’ll see who can survive longest: the LandMaster from Damnation Alley or the Panel Wagon from Hell Comes to Frogtown! Let us know in the comments, on our Facebook group, or on Twitter who you think will win! Throw in the hashtag #car-maggeddon !

Check out the other battles here:

Battle 1: Mad Max’s Pursuit Special vs. the Mustang from Cherry 2000

Battle 2: The Bus from Dawn of the Dead vs. the Tank from Tank Girl

Battle 3: Snowpeircer vs. Judge Dredd’s Law Master

    T. S. Beier is obsessed with science fiction, the ruins of industry, and Fallout. She is the author of What Branches Grow, a post-apocalyptic novel (which was a Top 5 Finalist in the 2020 Kindle Book Awards and a semi-finalist in the 2021 Self-Published Science Fiction Competition) and the Burnt Ship Trilogy (space opera). She is a book reviewer, editor, and freelance writer. She currently lives in Ontario, Canada with her husband, two feral children, and a Shepherd-Mastiff.

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